CLEVELAND (AP) -This was a pinch-hitter Josh Beckett probably didn't expect to see.
Country singer Danielle Peck, an Ohio native who used to date the Boston Red Sox ace, was scheduled to sing the national anthem and ``God Bless America'' on Thursday night for Game 5 of the AL championship series.
Beckett was set to pitch, with his team on the brink of elimination. Boston trailed the Cleveland Indians 3-1 in the best-of-seven series.
Peck was a substitute for Taylor Swift, another country star, who was originally slated to handle the singing duties.
``(Peck's) record company called and said she's got Ohio ties and we said, 'Perfect,''' Indians vice president Bob DiBiasio said.
Peck's manager, Bob Burwell, initially issued a no comment to media inquiries about the singer's relationship with Beckett through the Indians and said all interviews ``will abruptly end'' if their wishes aren't honored.
Later, all interview requests were politely declined.
DiBiasio said the Indians were unaware of the history between Beckett and Peck.
``An incredible coincidence,'' he said. ``Honestly.''
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